Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Background (Cont'd)

Today, I’ll finish the book deal story (short version). Tomorrow I’ll write a review of the book and mention some appearances I’ll be making in the next few weeks. Here is the requisite Amazon link if you’re suddenly compelled to make a donation to the cause.

This was the Gawker post that started things rolling. I don’t know who told them I was “working (my) way through graduate school,” but I came home from work the day this appeared and found over a hundred emails in my inbox. Several of these were from literary agents, all of whom wanted to know if I’d ever considered writing a book. I honestly hadn’t, but that changed very quickly after reading what people in the business had to tell me. That was some fucking day.

After several meetings, lunches, dinners and nights of drinking with agents, I decided to roll with Eileen Cope of Trident Media Group. We pumped out a proposal – and I really mean pumped out – and three weeks later, I was talking contract details with Mauro DiPreta from HarperCollins.

The thing people need to realize here is that I didn’t get a huge advance. Like I’ve said, the extra money was nice, but it wasn’t enough of an amount to allow me to quit working. I’d hoped for something like that in my more delusional moments, of course, but it wasn’t realistic. It would’ve been ideal to quit my three jobs back then. I could’ve spent my days writing the book without life getting in the way, and the damned thing would have been in stores a year ago. Work, however - along with some other (fairly serious) life-related shit - kept me from getting things done as quickly as I would have liked.

I wish I could be clean, tidy internet character “Rob the Bouncer” twenty-four hours a day, but I can’t. He really only shows up here. The rest of my life isn’t quite so tightly wrapped.

I have to point out how extremely fortunate I was to have landed Mauro as an editor, because he understood the limitations of my decidedly non-literary lifestyle and was incredibly patient with me while the “real world” kept throwing itself in my path. Hopefully we’ve put out a decent product for your late summer and fall reading. I’ll cover that in detail tomorrow when I write up a scathing review of my own work…